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Policy advocates can feel a lot like Sisyphus. Much like the mythic character who never pushes the boulder to the top, our task can seem like an endless, arduous uphill battle, and just when you think you’ve made it, you find yourself at the bottom starting all over again.

That’s how it felt for CAFB policy staff and many of our member food banks who have been advocating for two important initiatives over the past several years, and nearly—but not quite—succeeding each legislative session.

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Created out of a desire to offer a dignified shopping environment for those with low income, Redwood Empire Food Bank's Value Market came from humble beginnings. The first step was becoming a WIC authorized vendor, and though the space wasn't much bigger than a phone booth, it allowed moms to make their purchases quickly and save valuable time.

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School being out for summer elicits celebration for those who bid a brief farewell to homework and welcome summer camps and family vacations. Many children, though, face the season with a sense of dread. Instead of wondering what to pack, their main concern is where they will get their next meal.

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This year’s Hunger Action Day began with a flurry of people emptying out of busses and pouring into the big white tent where the day’s festivities would take place. People perused the variety of Clif Bars for an energy boost after their journey to the Capitol from places like Orange County, Fresno, Santa Cruz, and Santa Rosa.

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Americans couldn’t get enough of watching “Friends.” People across the country were doing the Macarena. It was President Bill Clinton’s first term in the White House.

Here in California, CAFB got its start in 1995, when several visionary food bank leaders saw the potential of joining forces and advocating with a unified voice to improve public policies related to hunger.

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